Bhutan – the country and its gold coins

Interesting facts about Bhutan

Bhutan is a landlocked country located in Asia between China and India. Bhutan is completely surrounded by land and has no access to the sea. Official name: Kingdom of Bhutan Capital: Thimphu Population: 793,366 (as of early 2023) Area: 38.117 km2

National flag

The national flag of Bhutan is bicolored and diagonally divided into equal yellow and orange fields with a white dragon in the center. The flag of Bhutan represents strength in unity and character. The yellow color represents His Majesty as Head of State. The color orange represents the spiritual traditions of Bhutan.

Most important languages

Tshanglakha, also known as Sharchokpa, the native language of the Tshanglas in eastern Bhutan Lhotshamkha, also called Nepali, is spoken in southern Bhutan Bumthangkha is spoken in the central region of Bhutan.   The national animal of Bhutan is the Takin. The takin is a goat antelope. The Takin is native to Bhutan and feeds on leaves, grass and bamboo shoots. Salt is also an essential part of their diet, which is why they can be found at various mineral deposits. The national sport of Bhutan is archery, also called Dha. Archery is often played at parties and celebrations.  

Main cities

Thimphu Punakha Tsirang (Chirang) Phuntsholing   According to BBC Travel, street signs in Bhutan are often written in rhyme. Examples include: “Going faster will see disaster” (Going faster will see disaster), “On the bend, go slow friend” (On the bend, go slow friend) and “After drinking whiskey, driving is risky’ (After drinking whiskey, driving is risky’). In Bhutan, it is believed that teaching children to be good people is as important as getting good grades in school.  

Bhutan Happiness Index

The success of a nation is traditionally measured by its gross domestic product (GDP). GDP refers to the total value of goods produced and services rendered by a country in a given year. GDP can provide an accurate representation of a nation’s economic success, but it unfortunately does not accurately measure true fulfillment and well-being. An alternative measure of success is Bhutan’s Gross National Happiness Index. Gross National Happiness (GNH), sometimes called Gross Domestic Happiness (GDH), is a philosophy that guides the government of Bhutan. It includes an index that measures the collective happiness and well-being of a population. Many of the GNH indicators have their roots in Buddhism. Psychological well-being includes meditation, prayer, non-violence, and reincarnation, among others. The country’s GNH secretary, Karma Tshiteem, said Buddhism is the key to people’s happiness. About three quarters of Bhutan’s inhabitants are Buddhists. There is a dress code in Bhutan. Men wear traditional knee-length robes and women must wear ankle-length dresses. The colors of the clothes reveal the social class and status of the person. Yellow is an important color in Bhutan and is used to indicate a person’s social status. Yellow scarves are worn by monks and nobles, while white scarves are worn by commoners. Travel for tourists in Bhutan can only be done with a registered guide, which means you will be accompanied by a local on your trip. Foreign visitors must pay a rate of 250 USD per day.  

Birthdays

In Bhutan, people celebrate their birthdays on New Year. Every Bhutanese becomes one year older on every New Year’s Day, which is very convenient for people who forget such important dates or are illiterate. Therefore, the year of birth is much more important to Bhutanese than the day or month. Slavery was a common legal, economic and social reality in Bhutan until its abolition only in 1958. The Bhutanese name for Bhutan, Druk Yul, means “Land of the Thunder Dragon’.” (German: “Land of the Thunder Dragon”). Dragons: In Bhutan, thunder is believed to be the voice of dragons in the many mountains and valleys of Bhutan. A dragon can also be seen on the flag of the country. The dragon seizes jewels that represent national wealth and perfection. Tea: Tea is an important beverage in Bhutan. The most popular drink is Suja, a yak butter tea, which is popular among very many Bhutanese. The drink is made by boiling tea leaves, straining them and mixing the liquid with yak butter in a wooden cylinder. Salt and/or pepper can also be added.  

Typical dishes

A typical meal often consists of two elements: Rice and chili. The most common ingredients are rice, chili, yak meat and dairy products. The Bhutanese national dish is the Ema Datshi. Ema (chilies) + Datshi (cheese) is a dish where chilies and onions are cooked until they simmer, then melted cheese, preferably yak cheese, is added.  

Gold coins from Bhutan – our favorites

Our two Bhutan gold coins favorites are from 1966 from Bhutan to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Jigme Dorji’s accession to the throne. According to Wikipedia, Dasho Jigme Palden Dorji (December 14, 1919 – April 6, 1964) was a Bhutanese politician and member of the Dorji family. By marriage, he was also a member of the House of Wangchuck. As Jigme Dorji Wangchuck’s brother-in-law, Dorji was close to his relative and accompanied the future king when he lived in the United Kingdom in 1950. At the age of nine, Jigme Palden Dorji was appointed Trungpa (administrator) of Haa Dzongkhag in 1928, and in 1953 he succeeded his father Raja Tobgay as Bhutan agent in Kalimpong after his death. He became the first man to hold the title of Prime Minister of Bhutan (Lyonchen). This occurred after the old office was upgraded in 1958 as part of a series of reforms by Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. As the brother-in-law of the Dragon King of Bhutan, Dorji helped advance the king’s modernization policies. His reforms, however, antagonized both the military and religious institutions, leading an army corporal to assassinate him in April 1964. Brigadier General Bahadur Namgyal, the chief of Bhutan’s Royal Army, was among those executed for the murder plot. The night before the assassination, Jigme had met in Samtse with Avtar Singh, India’s accredited representative in Bhutan at the time, and had traveled to Phuntsholing the next day. While playing cards with his brother Rimpochhe, Rimpochhe’s wife Savitri, and a few others, Jigme was shot from a window ten meters behind where Jigme was sitting. When the assassin was caught and interrogated, he confessed that he had received the order to shoot from Chabda Namgyal Bahadur, the army chief and uncle of King Jigme. Chabda Namgyal was discreetly arrested and executed in the palace district. Quartermaster General Bacchu Phugel was also arrested and placed under strict arrest in connection with the assassination. It was alleged that although Chabda Namgyal had given the order, Bacchu Phugel was the real mastermind behind the assassination. Before a verdict could be reached, Bacchu Phugel was stabbed and killed in his cell that night. It later turned out that the pistol the assassin had used had been borrowed from the king’s mistress Jigme Dorji – a weapon the king had given her as a gift. The investigation into the assassination ended with the execution of Chabda Namgyal, without any motive for the assassination being established. However, it is believed that the assassination was due to the growing power struggle between Chabda Namgyal, Bacchu Phugel and the mistress against Jigme Palden Dorji. There was a rift between Chabda and Bacchu due to the new policy and the introduction of young blood into high positions by Jigme Palden Dorji. It was also reported that when the mistress used state transportation under the army for her personal use, Jigme Palden Dorji transferred the trucks to the civil administration, which increased the tension between them.   In our store you can buy both gold coins from Bhutan: one graded as proof PF 69 and the other MS 65. https://www.rarecoin.de/edelmetall-muenzen-kaufen/bhutan-1-sertum-jigme-dorji-40-jahrestag-der-thronbesteigung-ngc-ms65/ – Edition: 2300 https://www.rarecoin.de/edelmetall-muenzen-kaufen/bhutan-1-sertum-jigme-dorji-40-jahrestag-der-thronbesteigung-ngc-pf69-cameo/ – Edition: only 598